Sunday, July 30, 2006

'I went from being the man to being manure'

The words of Chris Pronger, who has his first real sit down with someone in the California media in today's Los Angeles Times.

There's not much there that's earth-shattering, to be sure, but it's still worth a read. Among the more interesting tidbits, Pronger says there's no chance he'll request to move from Anaheim.

Pronger also addresses the rumours that hit the 'net soon after his trade request from Edmonton:
"People want to make up stuff? I'll go with that. If they want to make it up about me, that's fine. But if you start bringing in my family, you're starting to get a little close …"

Pronger has a theory about why the rumors began.

"It's to discredit me," he says. "Now I'm even more of a villain."


At 8:20 a.m., July 31, 2006, Blogger Skraut said...

Ok I'll get this out before all the Pronger Basher's appear.

I don't like what he did, but I respect the hell out of the way he did it. After requesting a trade, he could have "Phoned it in" for the rest of the season as many players would have done, but the fact that noboday outside the Oilers management had any clue how he felt, shows just how hard he continued to work. Granted getting a chance to hoist Stanley will put an extra jump in anybody's step, but the number of shots he blocked throughout the playoffs, made me have a lot of respect for him.

At 10:38 a.m., July 31, 2006, Blogger Cat said...

Not to get into any of the rumors or Pronger bashing that will inevitably happen, it seems that he got a decent deal. Playing hockey in sunny California with a team that does show potential? He must have done something right with the Oilers management to keep him from being thrown to Columbus.

At 10:56 a.m., July 31, 2006, Blogger Rick said...

Well, this whole thing has proceeded with the unspoken assumption (in the canadian press) that Pronger did something almost unpatriotic.

The reaction would not have been the same if he had been requesting a trade from Carolina.

Is it really so hard to believe that someone wouldn't want to live in Edmonton? Good god.

At 11:21 a.m., July 31, 2006, Anonymous Dennis Prouse said...

I'm not going to repeat all of the rumours, but something just doesn't smell right with Pronger's hasty departure from Edmonton. This is a city where he willingly signed a five year deal less than twelve months earlier, and his team just went to the Finals. Now all of a sudden he wants out? When is the last time this happened in the NHL, i.e. player with four years left on a lucrative deal requests a trade? I'd say almost never. The whole thing just doesn't add up. When he says stuff like, "It's personal and it's going to stay that way", all he does is confirm everyone's suspicions. If you want people to accept you reneging on a long term contract, you need to better than that.

At 11:57 a.m., July 31, 2006, Anonymous grace said...

Respect the hell out of someone who left everyone hung out to dry while he vacationed in Mexico?

For this reason alone, I'm glad my beloved Oilers didn't win the Stanley Cup. This man doesn't deserve to hoist the Stanley Cup.

As for, "if he wanted out of Carolina." Wrong. If, let's say, Cam Ward signed a long term deal to stay in Carolina and then suddenly hung his team, the city and management out to dry, I'd have nothing but contempt for him as well.

As for a decent deal, the Oilers did it to benefit themselves, not to benefit Pronger. I'm sure if Nashville or Columbus could have offered something of substance they would have sent him there. I'm just sad that the Islanders didn't make a move. That would have been karma.

I read the article and I'm not impressed. He can maintain that he's taking the high road and he's a person of character all he wants but at the end of the day he's a spoiled athlete who doesn't deserve or warrant respect. Respect would have been given in droves if he honoured the deal he asked for.

At 12:45 p.m., July 31, 2006, Anonymous Doogie2K said...

How can we understand your reasoning if you won't enlighten us, O Gap-Toothed Wonder? Seriously, given that he walked away from a team that had just as much potential as the Ducks, nearly double the salary of the next guy on the team, and a fanbase that worshipped the ground he walked on, I would prefer something a little more concrete than "it's personal."

It's not that I feel it was selfish, or unpatriotic, or malicious (though I do tend towards the first quite strongly). I just think that, while it's certainly his right not to say anything, no one should expect us to just understand, never mind be grateful that he still did the job for which he was paid more money than we'll ever see in our lives. You can't have it both ways.

At 3:12 p.m., July 31, 2006, Blogger Drew said...

As grace said, Edmonton made the move that would benefit them best, not the Orbs. Logic would dictate that most times, a player of Pronger's ability is going to be moved to a team in the upper half of the spectrum as they simply have more to give. A team such as Columbus, Pittsburgh, or Washington simply can't afford to lose their one star player to bring in another.

That said, what's so bad about Columbus. The only argument that makes any sense as to why someone wouldn't want to come here is that they are not an instant Cup contender. But in today's NHL, who is? Look back to everyone's picks from 10 months ago. Who picked Carolina/Buffalo/Edmonton/Anaheim to get that far? I'm not saying that the CBJ will contend for the title this year, but it's always "enlightening" to me when I'm reminded how little so many people know about how great a hockey city Columbus is. At this point, there is no team in the NHL that you can write off. Even the crazy St. Louis experiment may work, who knows.

That's why they play the games.


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